Wednesday, 24 May 2023

Panticapaeum stater = $6m

The Panticapaeum stater sold at auction for $6 million at Numismatica Ars Classica in Switzerland making it the most expensive ancient coin ever sold at auction. The soaring price has been attributed to the coin’s quality, rarity, and the fact the supply of similar specimens is extremely limited with most housed in museums. The coin is thought to reference king Satyros I, who ruled a Greco-Scythian empire in eastern Crimea from 432 to 389 B.C.E. Panticapaeum was an ancient Greek city on the eastern shore of Crimea, which the Greeks called Taurica. The city lay on the western side of the Cimmerian Bosporus, and was founded by Milesians in the late 7th or early 6th century BC, on a hill named Mount Mithridat. Its ruins now lie in the modern city of Kerch.
The coin was minted circa 340–25 B.C.E. and features a satyr on the obverse and a griffin gripping a spear in its beak on the reverse. The coin was part of the State Hermitage Museum’s collection, but was sold off in 1934 as part of Stalin’s push to sell works of art.